Fulton County, NY - Northville Police Officer Robert Johnson was mortally wounded when he was struck by a passing motorist on Monday night, July 3, according to News 10. He succumbed to his injuries early Tuesday morning.
The incident occurred about 10:05 PM along Route 30 in the Hamlet of Northampton, about a half-mile south of the Northville Bridge.
Police said that Officer Robert Johnson had stopped to help an injured deer lying in the middle of the road. Another driver, Joseph Winnie, that was headed northbound struck Officer Johnson, and he died from his injuries.
Winnie said that he saw vehicles stopped on the other side of the road, and that he moved toward the shoulder of the road he was traveling on 'to avoid anything' that might be in the road. Deputies said that traffic was was parked there because of the collision involving the deer, and that the 25-year-old driver was driving 'within the appropriate speed limit at the time of the crash.'
The speed limit there is 55 mph.
The Fulton County Sheriff's Office is conducting the investigation, and said that the driver is not expected to be charged. He was tested for alcohol and drugs, and both were negative.
Officer Johnson, age 60, was a retired Gloverville police officer, and worked part-time for the Northville Police Department. He had also served as a part-time deputy with the Fulton County Sheriff's Office several years ago, as well as working previously part-time as a federal security officer in Albany.
Fulton County Sheriff Richard Giardino said that Officer Robert Johnson had been "a good friend" for 30 years, and that he had officiated Officer Johnson's wedding.
He said that Officer Johnson was walking with his service revolver out toward the deer to put it down, when he was struck by the front right of Winnie's 2009 Forester. Officer Johnson was transported to Nathan Littauer Hospital, where he died just after midnight on Tuesday.
He said that Winnie "mistakenly hit, struck and killed Bob Johnson", according to The Leader-Herald.
Sheriff Giardino said that Officer Johnson came from a "a family of officers," and that his brother and nephew are in law enforcement.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Northville Police Officer Robert Johnson, both blood and blue. Godspeed, sir, we will take the watch from here. Thank you for your service.